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Posted by: Dave on February 12, 2007 at 9:34 pm

ThePoliceSunday night, The Police kicked off their reunion by performing “Roxanne” on the 49th annual Grammy Awards. Sting’s vocals were strong, the band was tight and one of the most popular bands of the late 70s and early 80s showed they still have what it takes to make magic on stage. My only complaint was that they didn’t play more.

Of course, I can hear more of The Police live if I can get my hands on a ticket. They just announced fourteen dates for their upcoming North America tour, their first since 1986. According to thepolicetour.com, the festivities will begin on May 28th in Vancouver and wrap-up with two nights at Madison Square Garden in NYC in early August (see preliminary dates below). Additional cities and dates will be announced in the next few weeks.

Seeing the reunited Police would be quite a thrill, especially since I was too young to catch them live the first time around. I’m also intrigued by their special guest/opening act, Fiction Plane. The band is most notable for their vocalist/guitarist Joe Sumner, Sting’s son. He’s been blessed with a powerful and distinct set of pipes like his father. They’re not a Police tribute act, though. They mix a big, hard rockin’, atmospheric sound with spirit, passion and heart-on-sleeve emotions. The end result is in the ballpark of U2 and Starsailor, but more aggressive. At least that’s what Fiction Plane sounded like when they released their major-label debut album, Everything Will Never Be OK, on March 11, 2003.

Since then, the band had fallen off my radar completely. I often wondered what became of them, particularly since we met back in March of 2003. At the time they were promoting their album, and I taped a couple interview segments with them for MTV2’s coverage of the South By Southwest Music Festival. Before the interview started, Jim Shearer (the VJ) and I (the producer) asked Joe Sumner if it was alright to mention that he was Sting’s son. He said it was fine. Then we taped the segment and afterwards Joe looked very upset. He said he didn’t like how we associated him with his father and asked that we re-shoot the interview without any mention of Sting. We obliged and that was pretty much the last I heard from Fiction Plane.

In the years that followed, I assumed their lack of success was at least partially related to Joe’s inability to function as a successful musician in the enormous shadow of his father. I know he wanted to create his own identity, but being more open about his familial ties would have seemingly brought more attention to the band. After the initial Sting/Fiction Plane connection was made, they’d still have to prove themselves as worthy musicians before anyone would take them seriously.

Well, now Fiction Plane is opening for The Police. I guess the cat’s out of the bag. And where have Joe Sumner and company been hiding all this time? According to their official site, they did release an EP in 2005, but they’ve had “some ups and down in the industry (3 labels in 3 years).” They will start recording a new album in early March and release it this summer. With the high profile status of this tour and the impossibility of avoiding the Sting connection, I’m guessing Fiction Plane is going to reach a wider audience this time around.

The Police: North American Tour Dates 2007

28-May Vancouver, BC GM Place
06-June Seattle, WA Key Arena
09-June Denver, CO Pepsi Center
15-June Las Vegas, NV MGM Grand Garden Arena
16-June Manchester, TN Bonnaroo Festival
18-June Phoenix, AZ US Airways Arena
26-June Dallas, TX American Airlines Center
30-June New Orleans, LA New Orleans Arena
02-July St. Louis, MO Scottrade Center
22-July Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre
25-July Montreal, PQ Bell Centre
28-July Boston, MA Fenway Park
01-Aug New York, NY Madison Square Garden
03-Aug New York, NY Madison Square Garden



2 Responses to “The Police Announce Reunion Tour Dates, Sting’s Son’s Band Is Opening Act”

  1. Steve Says:

    Nice story Dave. I too, had completely forgotten about the talented young Sumner.

    It’s sad that he didn’t feel comfortable broadcasting who he was in this age when nepotism runs rampant while talent falls woefully short (see Brooke Hogan, Paris Hilton, Ashlee Simpson, Hallie Duff, etc.) ; surely the wider audience he would have reached, and now thankfully will reach, will find him to be the real thing (see Natalie Cole, The Nelson Twins, Nicole Richie, well, the jury’s still out on Nicole Richie).

    This all reminds me of Andy Yorke – brother of Radiohead’s Thom Yorke – amazing singer and songwriter in his own right, though purposely operates in relative obscurity. His former band, The Unbelievable Truth, is worth checking out. You can learn about his new project, The Sad Song Co., here: http://www.thesadsongco.com/index.php

  2. Dave Says:

    Wow. Unbelievable Truth. I haven’t thought about them in awhile. Andy’s vocals were the highlight of their 1998 debut album and the music sounded good, I never thought the songs were too specialm though.

    I just checked out two tracks from The Sad Song Co. on their MySpace page:
    http://uk.myspace.com/thesadsongco

    “Blind Man” and “Gulag Parenting” are pretty good. I’d say there’s more promise there than Unbelievable Truth. It’s just more interesting.

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